Want to play with the stars?

11/8/2003 – This weekend we are holding the First European Internet Championship on the Playchess.com server this weekend. This is your chance to play with to GMs like Adams, Bologan, Khalifman, Radjabov, Sutovsky, Bacrot, Nunn. Don't miss it...

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The countdown is running – only a few days are left to register for the European Internet Championship. However, Grandmasters, players with a FIDE rating of 2500 or better as well as World and European Champions of all ages can still register here. In order to play or watch in this Internet tournament you can use Fritz 8 or any Fritz-compatible program (Shredder, Junior, Tiger, Hiarcs), or you can download a free trial client here.

The field of participants makes the tournament an event well worth watching, particularly the knock-out final on Sunday when a prize fund of €6.000 will be at stake and each game will be fought out until the very last move.

On the evening befort the championship, on Saturday November 8th, the candidates’ tournament will take place. Eight GMs, 16 IMs, 14 FMs and more than 60 outstanding server cracks will fight for the 16 remaining places for the final, making the event a highlight of its own.

Here is a glance at the fields of participants (registered to play in the final, in no particular order):

GM Emil Sutovsky – He calls himself Emilios1 on our chess server, and he is know for his active, risky play. This makes the young Israeli GM (and baritone singer) a pleasure to watch.

GM Etienne Bacrot – The young man who logs in under the name "etba" has won the French national championship for the fifth time this year. And that at 20. Etienne was the yougest GM in history when he got his title. Definitely a player to watch.

GM Alexander Khalifman – This is a genuine, hands-on ex FIDE world champion. His handle on the server is MrSlow. Let us assume that this is the fine Russian art of understatement and that he will be an awesome opponent in the blitz games on the playchess.com server.

GM Viktor Bologan – The man who shocked everybody by qualifying for the the Super-GM in Dortmund by winning one of the toughest tournaments in the world, the Aeroflot Open, and then went on to win Dortmund itself, ahead of Kramnik, Anand and Leko. The Moldavian is a force to be reckoned with.

GM Dr John Nunn – he can already be called a legend in chess. Even if Dr Nunn has somewhat reduced his ambitions as a player in recent years, he is definitely a player to be reckoned with. Under the nickname “Doccy” he has been playing on the server nearly since the very first day. It will be interesting to watch whether the level of his blitz will approximately reach the level of his books (then he would certainly be the favorite).

GM Teimur Radjabov - one of the great young talents in chess. Although just 15 he has collected successes against world class players. His style – particularly choice of openings – is sometimes considered a bit dubious. But this will certainly be an advantage for Sunday, because in blitz the initiative usually is already half the battle.

GM Loek van Wely – already his handle, "King Loek", shows that he is not a friend of compromises. Again and again the young Dutchman has proven that he his chess motto is “all or nothing”, and this attitude will certainly serve him well in the knock-out mode which requires good nerves all along.

GM Michael Adams – when the knock-out tournaments became popular in chess some years ago, Michael Adams was always to be found among the first placed, excelling by his abolute sangfroid. His coolness has secured him a permanent place among the top ten on the playchess.com ratings lists.

GM Robert Rabiega – the Bundesliga player from Berlin is doubtlessly an expert in rapid chess. His server rating is usually above 2800 (placing him among the first five). It will be very exciting to see whether he will be able to use his special skills in rapid chess to exceed the placement one could expect from his FIDE rating.

GM Klaus Bischoff – he has shown his qualities by winning the first German Internet Championship. In this tournament, however, he will have to play at his highest level right from the beginning, because the knock-out system knows no mercy for late starters. Should he succeed, he can certainly be a difficult hurdle for nominally much stronger players.

GM Jonathan Rowson – the young Scotsman will play the tournament from Island. His interesting and readable books have gained him many fans, who will keep their fingers crossed that on Sunday some of his creative ideas will be crowned by success.


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